I’ve officially finished my first week of online classes! If you can even say that, that is. School was cancelled on Monday and Tuesday due to the online switch, I didn’t have any classes on Wednesday besides pre-recorded lectures, and I don’t have classes on Fridays. So that left today, Thursday, and honestly it was an out-of-body experience.
Waking up 15 minutes before class, putting on a shirt, and waving a hand over your head to make sure you get rid of that nasty fly-away-just-out-of-bed hairdo – now that’s something I could get used to. No one knows that you haven’t brushed your teeth yet, I promise.
There’s something about a Zoom call that makes you more aware of zoning out. I mean, don’t get me wrong, these lectures are brutal. Every distraction in your house is right in your eyesight. But your professor can’t see you watch Netflix on your laptop. Hell, they can’t even hear it since you’re on mute. But trust me, you feel guilty. You’re more self-aware. You can see your posture – woah, how long have you been slouching like that? – and just like that you missed the last 5 minutes of the lecture.
Paying attention is impossible.
Oh boy, there were some technical problems. And here’s the funniest thing: it had nothing to do with the Zoom platform itself. It was the professors not knowing how to work anything, putting slides that were too small on the screen, and the occasional student who didn’t put themselves on mute. It was purely human error.
But perhaps the best representation of this was my Leg Reg class in which the professor didn’t have his computer audio on. He wasn’t able to hear us ask questions and, even with the IT guy right next to him, took 20 minutes to rectify the problem. Since we were all able to hear each other, several students began talking about changes to the grading system and our school’s thoughts on a pass/fail semester. Some other students were swearing at how long it took to fix. There were some trying to tell the professor what was wrong on the chat. He didn’t check it once.
All of that being said, the administration is still thinking about making more changes to our semester (like the pass/fail system). This lack of consistency is beginning to drive me nuts.
A more than healthy dose of sarcasm aside, please stay safe and may your heart be full during these difficult times.
Yours from a distance,